Habs kick off stretch of road play vs. Bruins

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Montreal Canadiens will begin a road-heavy stretch of play on Saturday night with a stop in Boston to take on the rival Bruins for the third time this season.

The Habs are set to play three straight and seven of their next eight on the road, where they are 6-2-1 on the season. This slate of games comes on the heels of Montreal having played eight of 10 at home to begin the month.

The Canadiens packed their bags on a winning note, having topped the St. Louis Blues 4-1 on Thursday. Max Pacioretty led the charge on his 26th birthday with a pair of goals.

"I told my parents this morning that this is my time, around my birthday, but I don't want to get too far ahead of myself," Pacioretty said. "I'm just happy to contribute and hope we all keep going now."

Dale Weise and Lars Eller also scored and Carey Price made 31 saves for the Canadiens, who rebounded from Tuesday's 4-0 loss to Pittsburgh to win for the seventh time in their last eight games.

Pacioretty leads Montreal with 10 goals and 18 points, and he also netted a pair of tallies in a 5-1 victory over visiting Boston on Nov. 13. Weise and Eller scored as well and Price made 21 saves as the Canadiens defeated the Bruins for the third straight time and for the eighth time in the last nine meetings.

Dougie Hamilton picked up the lone score in defeat and Niklas Svedberg was on the hook for all five goals on 34 shots for the Bruins, who have lost four straight at home in this series.

Price will start for the Habs tonight and is 19-8-3 lifetime against the Bruins with a 2.50 goals against average and .918 save percentage.

Boston returns home to play for a second straight night having topped the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-3 in a shootout last night. Alex Khokhlachev had the lone tally of the tiebreaker, lighting the lamp in the seventh round.

Khokhlachev was recalled from the American Hockey League on Thursday on an emergency basis and was inserted into the lineup when David Krejci was a late scratch due to an undisclosed issue. Friday night marked his second career game.

Khokhlachev's heroics were made possible thanks to third-period goals from Dennis Seidenberg, Matt Fraser and Daniel Paille as Boston went on to win its third straight and eighth in the past 10.

"That was a good comeback win knowing we're down two goals going into the third," Bruins coach Claude Julien said.

Svedberg stopped 25 shots through overtime for a Bruins club that also was without Brad Marchand due to an unknown injury.

With Svedberg having started last night, Tuukka Rask is likely to start in net versus the Canadiens. He is just 3-11-3 with a 2.80 GAA and .902 save percentage in this matchup.